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Alice in Wonderland and Philosophy
curiouser and curiouser
Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture Series

Edited by Richard Brian Davis


Alice in Wonderland and Philosophy is indeed a curious book. It is a compendium of essays written by a variety of philosophical scholars, hailing from an assortment of universities throughout the United States through the Jabberwocky Society of America.  Interestingly, most of the essayists are men, with just two women contributing.  It is of note, however, that the first essay in the book is entitled "Unruly Alice: A Feminist View of Some Adventures in Wonderland"  and is written by Megan S.  Lloyd.

I thought the first essay might set the tone for the book. I was wrong. Each essay is absolutely unique unto itself, causing the reader to shift mental gears to absorb the message the author is conveying—even as the reader (or at least myself as a reader) oft feels that a rabbit hole has indeed opened up within the very pages of this work of professorial profundity of philosophical prose.

Albeit smaller than normal for a scholarly work, this tome is divided into four sections:  "Wake Up,  Alice Dear" "That's Logic" "We're All Mad Here" and  "Who In The World Am I?"  Each part addresses Alice in Wonderland from a different slant of light—i.e. focusing on various scenarios from the original story and what they may really mean. Yet they mean different things to different readers,  no?

With the renewed popularity of Alice in Wonderland of late, most notably the current hit movie, this book is very timely and should appeal to a wide variety of people.  It will help younger readers more deeply explore the concepts laid out in the tale, and at the same time, should help those long familiar with Alice to reawaken those feelings of joy and promise and intrigue.   The book does certainly open one's mind to becoming  "curiouser and curiouser" and is well worth the read.  I read some of it in the morning, some over lunch, and some just before drifting off to sleep.    New dimensions arose from the essays at the varied times of reading, and I must say, I enjoyed the reading experience very much! Order your copy today—you won't be sorry!

The Book

John Wiley and Sons
January  2010
Literary Criticism / Philosophy
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The Reviewer

Laura Hinds
Reviewed 2010
NOTE: Reviewer Laura Hinds is an experienced freelance writer whose first novel, "Are You Gonna Eat That Banana?", just came out in 2009.
© 2010